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Ignited Games Blog

Ignited Games is a leading publisher of online games world-wide. Read our blog for the latest games news, previews, and much more!

Author: IgnitedGames

Contributors: WonderKing,RoshOnline,Dark_Eden,

Gameplay and Tough Decisions for PvP

Posted by WonderKing Friday July 24 2009 at 5:01PM
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Deciding to develop a 2D, side-scrolling game instead of a 3D game was easy. Our company, Ryu & Soft, has had experience in developing 2D games for quite some time and given that 2D games are our forte and our passion, we wanted to continue concentrating on the 2D genre. Additionally, the majority of our player base prefer 2D games over 3D games. Therefore, we decided for our users to start developing WonderKing. With our experience and skills in making 2D side-scrolling games, our mission was to provide another option – diverse in its elements with unique systems and content, yet still dedicated to the 2D side-scrolling MMORPG elements. We kept all this in mind as we dreamt of WonderKing.

Instead of forcing users to go through a legion of quests with similar objectives (and the redundancy of it), we wanted to develop quests that are special and exclusive to our game. The outcome was our system of “Mission Quests.” The quest is obtained through ordinary methods, but the conditions in accomplishing the objectives lead players to a specific Mission map portal. Upon entering the portal, there are specific requirements that must be met to complete the objective. The variety of Missions include: defense of an object from a horde of monsters, destroying a glowing monument that’s drawing evil closer to the town and threatening the sanctity of the village, guiding an NPC to the end of the Mission map safely, racing against other NPCs, and many more. We wanted our users to have a different experience and a unique brand of fun in each and every Mission map available in the game. Currently, we have 30+ Mission maps ready for users to enter, and we plan to add many more in the future.

One of the other unique things we wanted to implement in the game was the inability to use potions during PvP. Another limitation we implemented is that there are only three quick slots that a user can utilize in battle, so we challenge them to be very smart in their choices. Although we were unsure about how inconvenient disallowing potion usage could be in PvP, extensive testing brought us to the conclusion that with only three quick slots at a player’s disposal and a restriction from using potions, there were still diverse and distinct skill setting customizations that could be done before heading into battle. Furthermore, predicting an opponent’s skill setting promotes using one’s wits to come up with clever tactics to outsmart the challenger.

Additionally, there are many maps that PvP can be engaged in. It is not just a simple difference of graphics and setting between the maps – there are different traps, jump boosters, HP recovery items, strategic geographical features (such as staying in the right platform) and variations of all these features in each and every map.

Overall, we wanted to emphasize that it is not just a character’s strength and weakness that determines the outcome of PvP, but customization of quick slots, intelligence in using one’s surroundings, and even great fortune that can sway the tide of battle. Game play in WonderKing is more fun this way and this type of strategizing will give players a more satisfying victory in the end.
 

Challenges of Localization in Different Regions

Posted by WonderKing Friday July 10 2009 at 9:54AM
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Localization is only one part of a game, but to take a country’s situation and tradition into heart and to realize that you can accrue new wisdom, even at our age, is truly enlightening. Making a complete game is important, but preparing it in a way to fit a user’s taste is paramount. Whenever we take up a new project, we enter with a renewed mind and heart and it always turns into a joyous experience.
The first thing we take into account when performing any localization process is the various cultural differences among regions. For example, Korean and Japanese users have very different dispositions that dictate how a game should be, so when we were making a game for these two regions, we felt that we were making an entirely new game for each one. The contrast in the responses we received from the two countries is best exemplified in a particular contest that received dismal responses from users in Korea, but was wildly popular in Japan. Because of this contrast, there were instances when we distributed different patches that had particular contents that we did not release in the other one because of the contrast.


Another aspect to consider is differing time zones. Since Korea and Japan are very close in proximity, there was only a three minute difference in time zones. However, the sixteen hour gap between Korean and North American regions really pushed us to our limits. In North America, the sixteen hour time difference issue was the biggest hardship we faced. When localizing a product, we need a communication link with the person in charge of operations in each country. However, due to the time difference, we had a limited amount of time to discuss important matters. The North American branch leader and I decided to work the night shift in order to extend the time that we were able to communicate with other branches. Looking back, we expended a lot of energy to prevent that issue from becoming an inconvenience. It was all worth it to see the success. This gap, coupled with the differing sentence structures between English and Korean/Japanese, caused us to encounter a variety of other localization issues as well.


Although there were many challenges to localizing in different countries, we also had some strong points. Determining the desires and necessities of our local users, and creating a system to produce suitable items to fit them, was definitely a strong suit in our operation. In truth, due to version control problems, it wasn’t easy to implement a system for local users to access items easily, nor was it easy to introduce said system. However, even if those aspects of our operation felt cumbersome, we wanted to introduce this product on a national scale, not just a local scale. We felt that we were able to come up with items and a system to obtain these items that were accepted by each and every country. We felt that the system and the introduced items satisfied our users greatly. We hope to continue to provide quality products to our users and know that with each new challenge comes a huge success.


 

Postmortem of the Korean Beta and the Value of GMs

Posted by WonderKing Thursday July 2 2009 at 10:01AM
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When we were initially launching WonderKing (OBT) back in February of 2007, we wanted to use an unorthodox approach. Without any breaks between the phases, we launched CBT then OBT– in that particular order. We had that much confidence in the game. We definitely wanted to make an impactful first impression when launching the game in Korea, so we decided to direct our focus on game management. Among the essential aspects of game management, evaluating a user’s immediate reaction to the game was deemed a fairly important aspect. Therefore, for the well-being of our game, WonderKing, we jumped right in to inspect the features and put ourselves in the players’ shoes.
As predicted, we were overwhelmed by the number of users that participated. In fact, when the game first came out in Korea, our user population was so explosive that it made our Open Seed server crash! I definitely remember sleepless nights being very common those days. At one point, WonderKing was the most searched game title and the overall reaction from our users was very positive. With difficult and complicated games being the mainstream focus during that time, we broke away and worked on making an easy, comfortable, simple, and fun game for users. WonderKing was definitely a pioneer in refreshing the method of hunting monsters and resultantly gained the reputation of being a very creative game among users.


Every single one of our GMs was in the game, playing and testing while interacting with the players. The ever-so-weary GM, Jeff, was known as “the snobbish one.” Ciel, our kind and gentle GM, treated our users in a way that reflected her personality. Dialas was the GM known to have a personality as one dimensional as a machine. These GMs operated in- game as characters, as they sought out errors and personally resolved them while actually playing the game. Our in-game management was a huge success and the players were very happy with our efforts.


Though, not everything was a walk in the park – we did encounter some obstacles along the way. The first thing that comes to mind is the addition of more game content. Users leveled faster than we anticipated and matching the speedy rate they were leveling at was the greatest hurdle that we had to overcome. After encountering this in open beta, we made sure we had an abundant amount of content ready to be added to the game to satisfy users of all levels. There are certain parts of the game that we want to add more content to and believe this will be easily achieved by continuous service from us.
Overall, I have to say that our policies in game management were the most positive factor in our game. Even if we went through tough times, I was especially proud that we were able to make a breakthrough in how games should be developed. Still, there is always room for improvement and better service and we hope to be able to keep providing quality service in our game to the players.